Emotional & Mental Wellness
EMDR Therapy: A Mind and Body Therapy
By Cody Mitts MA, NCC

The Mind and Body Connection

What comes to mind when you think of talking to a therapist? Perhaps you imagine a person laying on a couch with a therapist next to them rapidly taking notes.

We all have some type of image or stereotype in our mind. What you may not realize is that mental health counseling has made some great advancements since the early days of Sigmund Freud.

As our understanding of human functioning has grown, we are starting to recognize the important link between our minds and bodies.

For instance there’s growing research that’s starting to understand how your digestive system is closely related to your mental health functioning.

As we better understand the connection between our bodies and minds, therapies are developing to better treat the whole person.

Rather than just focusing on what’s happening in your mind, it’s vitally important to understand what’s also happening in your body.

EMDR Therapy and Your Body

One of the cutting edge forms of therapy that has been building traction over the last 30 years is EMDR therapy. EMDR has developed as a holistic approach to therapy meaning that it focuses on how your body, mind, and emotions are all connected.

One of the wonderful aspects of EMDR therapy is that it allows you to approach your problem from all angles. Many of the traditional forms of talk therapy focus entirely on what’s happening in your mind, and overlook what’s happening in your body.

EMDR is a mind and body therapy that will help you address both sides of the problem.

As our understanding of trauma is increasing we recognize that stressful life events have a very powerful impact on the body.

When you experience a traumatic event your body can hold onto that experience in a very real way. EMDR therapy can help you work through the trauma that is stuck in your body.

Many of my clients have shared how EMDR has impacted their life. I once helped a client struggling with anger by using EMDR therapy. After a couple of sessions of EMDR work they told me they had experienced a calmness in their life like never before.

What this client experienced was a release of pain and emotion that they’d been carrying around in their body for many years without realizing it.

How Trauma Affects Your Body

When most people talk about trauma, the first thing that often gets discussed is how your mind is affected by a traumatic event. Trauma has a very real way of re-wiring the way your brain is functioning.

What can easily get overlooked is how your body’s affected by trauma. Have you ever had a moment where you were startled or overwhelmingly scared? Think about how your body reacted in that moment. You may have held your breath, clenched your muscles, or froze completely.

When you have an overwhelming experience your body can hold onto those feelings. Your body sensations are one of the reasons you feel so uncomfortable during a negative life experience.

That’s why it’s so important to focus on your body during therapy. One of the modern day experts on how trauma affects the body is Dr. Bessel Van Der Kolk who has written a great book called “The Body Keeps The Score.”

EMDR Therapy is a Holistic Therapy

The importance of the mind and body connection can’t be overstated. EMDR therapy can be very effective because it’s addresses this important connection during therapy. It allows you to work through the things that are keeping you stuck in your mind and in your body.

Holistic counseling helps you understand how all aspects of your life experiences are affecting your life. It helps you heal from the inside out.

EMDR therapy is a holistic therapy because it focuses on 3 important aspects of your health: body, mind, and emotions.

The goal of EMDR therapy is to help you live in harmony. To let your thoughts, your emotions and your physical body function together.

If you’ve struggled with the pain of a traumatic experience, EMDR therapy can be a very powerful way to transform your pain. You can learn more about EMDR therapy in Denver or contact a qualified therapist in your area.